Monday, 25 May 2009

How the Black Caps will make the semis... again

After their semifinal loss in the 2007 ICC World T20, New Zealand might just sneak through again, in a piece of news certain to similarly put a smile on the faces of Sri Lankans, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis all over the world.

If all these teams beat their opponents in the initial two matches during the qualifying round, they'll find themselves placed in two oddly imbalanced groups for the super eights stage of the tournament. It's hilarious, it really is.

Group A: South Africa, Australia, India, England
Group B: Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, New Zealand

That is, of course, assuming all these teams beat any unseeded teams in the qualifying round. However, should this be the result, the semifinals of the competition will be most amusing to watch.

Based on those groupings, Sri Lanka has an excellent chance of making the semis, and perhaps New Zealand could steal the other spot. Pakistan will be the main competition anyway. But if you glance at Group A, there's sure to be a power struggle between India, Australia and South Africa, all very capable and strong teams.

This is one reason to look forward to the tournament. Imagine the possibilities of the final four. It's too good to be true. Almost a farce, really.


Leg Break said...

Is Group A really that strong?

After all, they've got the weakest side in the final 8

Amy said...

I'm sure they're cursing their luck already.

But Bangladesh sure could give them a run for their money.

Q said...

So these Super 8 groups are pre-decided again like last time. I don't get it why they don't group these teams according to who has won more matches in round 1.

I mean it surely would make more sense to group A1, B2, C1, D2 or something like that.. rather than just have them there on the seeds.

raj said...

Q, dont forget that it's about fans being able to predict when the India=Pakistan match and buy tickets accordingly - you remember the WC where a Sunday was marked down as India-Pak encounter? And it ended up as Bang-Ireland? The whole point about not havin A1B2 scenarios was that one couldnt predict which was the I-P match. I think given that this is England hosting it, all the more reason to flag down India-Pak as the marquee match, and giving fans a hint.
Question is what happens if Netherlands gatecrashes this time?

Amy said...

Raj, you don't mean to say the entire tournament is a construct for Indian/Pak fans? Indeed, indeed.

Q said...

Raj: I know wat ur saying and the same was the case at the 20-20 last year as well as the ICC WC in 07.. but just to help with the sale of tickets does not mean that the format needs to be one that is not ideal..

Q said...

Amy: The ICC WC 2007 was a major flop, both as a show and financially.. ICC lost major money and the India / Pak markets crashed - sponsors / advertisers pulled out.

India makes 75% of the cricket watching population.. Pakistan another 10%.. The ICC had 85% of their market bailing on them..

The 20-20 WC hastily arranged in Sept 2007 was to attract the Indians and Pakistanis back to the game and recover the losses from the ODI WC that happened in the same year.

Thank heavens it was an India-Pak final, otherwise some fans would have never returned to the game after what happened in the 07 WC in the Windies..

Amy said...

And along with that, there's also the allure of T20 cricket as opposed to ODIs. Both theories work.

fool said...

A World Cup, and a fat chance of there not being an India-Pak encounter at all. Not worth it!!!! Can anyone calculate the opportunity costs of having such a system?[/)]

- Jaideep

Amy said...

I smell economics. You wouldn't happen to have studied it by any chance, would you?

fool said...

[i]I smell economics. You wouldn't happen to have studied it by any chance, would you?[/i]

Not at all, let me assure you.

I thought economics was all besh, till I came across this schedule.[crack]

Amy said...

As it turns out, I have. It's boring as hell but if you have a knack for it, you can get by. And it's bloody useful for getting work too.

Q said...

I studied Economics...

Anyway the simple reason for those groupings is the seeding from the previous WC, where the teams ended up as:

1. India
2. Pakistan
3. Australia
4. New Zealand
5. South Africa
6. Sri Lanka
7. England
8. Bangladesh
9. Zimbabwe
10. West Indies

Ofcourse the Zimbos pulled out so Scotland qualified instead of them...

Then you got:

Group A: 1, 8, qualifier 1 (Ireland)

Group B: 2, 7, qualifier 2 (Netherlands)

Group C: 3, 6, 9 (WI not Zim)

Group D: 4, 5, qualifier 3 (Scotland)

And then in the Super 8s, its another 2 groups, E and F:

Group E: 1, 3, 5, 7
Group F: 2, 4, 6, 8

With regards to just T20 cricket, it may not be that far off from the true rankings..

Amy said...

Good point. I guess we'll have to actually see how the teams perform to really be sure about anything now.